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Sale 72

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Lot 4039

Macedonia, Acanthus / Akanthos. Silver Tetradrachm (16.9g) struck ca. 470-430 BC. Lioness right, head facing, attacking bull collapsing left, head reverted and grounded; above, pellet-in-annulet; in exergue, floral motif; beaded border and exergual line. Reverse: Quadripartite incuse square. Cf. Desneux Type G (position of bull's head); otherwise unpublished. Attractive antique toning. An outstanding finely detailed example. Superb Extremely Fine.

A lion attacking a bull was an ambitious design for die-engravers of the archaic period, and their efforts often resulted in a somewhat confused appearance. On this specimen, however, the artist has successfully represented his subject with an unusual degree of clarity. The symbolism may be Anatolian in origin and relate to the worship of Cybele. However, lions and wild bulls are known to have abounded in this region, and such scenes of combat may well have been familiar to the citizens of Akanthos. The city was situated on the isthmus connecting the peninsula of Acte with Chalcidice and was founded by colonists from the island of Andros. Early issues, commencing in the last quarter of the sixth century, lacked an ethnic but the full city name was added surrounding the square during the 460s BC.
Estimated Value $12,000 - 16,000.
The Hunter Collection.

Realized $35,650

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